Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Writers Are Strange

As a writer sometimes these phrases just slip into your mind, you don't know where they came from but they're just there. Random. Uninvited. Obtrusive sometimes. The gunk between my toes. That's the sentence that came to me. Dangling in front of me like a pair of dirty panties. And of course, I think a lot about things in terms of metaphor and how they relate to writing or something I'm doing. Mostly it's writing. So when the sentence emerged, after my initial shock and horror at the weirdness of it, I wondered, how I could make that about writing. And then I noticed the stain on my shirt from dinner two nights ago. And it occurred to me that I often forget about some of the simplest things. Like personal hygiene. (When I'm writing.)

It brings up an interesting point. When I'm in the zone, writing so crazy-like that if I came up for air my eyes would be bloodshot, and drool would be crusted to my chin, I don't shower as often as I should. It's not that I don't want to shower. I simply forget. The story takes precedence. Until of course my husband or child is begging me, almost dragging me to the bath.

I write in a frenzy, bed hair remaining through the bulk of the day. Only when I sneak outside for a smoke break and someone walks by do I suddenly realize I must look a fright. Or I drain the 17th cup of coffee and realize it's cold and tastes like ass.

I like to call it my lived-in look, just like the crap scattered around the house, too lazy or too involved (in the story) to care what's falling apart around me. The dirty plates piled on the table because the kid is too lazy to put it away herself and she probably asked me hours earlier to get her some lunch and when I didn't respond she pulled out the peanut butter jar and started eating it with a spoon, and then forgetting the spoon she used her fingers and smeared it all over the cat so now there are peanut butter cat prints all over the floor, the wall, the scratching post, the table, in the bathtub.

Okay, not really. I'm exaggerating some.

But I suppose it's one of my quirks of writing. I never gave it much thought until recently. But it's true, when I'm writing, I forget some of the simplest things.

And everyone has them. Weird little things they do or don't do when they're in the middle of a story. I always think of Johnny Depp in the Secret Window, loping around in his housecoat, hair a mess, sipping coffee and just looking anxious.

It's the mind of an artist.

What's your inner writer weirdness?

1 comment:

  1. The shower things comes to mind immediately but I forget to eat lunch. I actually wait until I have hunger pangs and a headache - so out of character! Thank goodness I am not the cook in the family so I am in no danger of starving!


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